Witcher author demands $16 million dollars from CD Projekt Red

Discussion in 'GBAtemp & Scene News' started by Chary, Oct 2, 2018.


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    Andrzej Sapkowski, known for writing the series of novels that would be adapted into the video game franchise of The Witcher, is threatening developer CD Projekt Red with legal action. Sapowski demands about $16.1 million in royalty fees for the success of The Witcher intellectual property. The demand stems from a Polish law that states if a creator isn’t given a proportionate amount of money for their creation, then they’re due to claim more in a settlement. CD Projekt Red opposes Sapkowski’s demands, claiming that they paid a flat fee when originally securing the rights to make a series of video games. Originally, the company approached the author with plans to offer a percentage of profits from sales, but Sapkowski believed that the games would be unsuccessful, so he took an initial one time payment instead. CD Projekt Red has until October 9th to come to a conclusion on the matter, or else they’ll face legal troubles.

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    Discussion (46 replies)
  1. Ritsuki

    Ritsuki ORAORAORAORA

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    I love how the guy made a very very bad decision, and now the studio is famous he's like "hey, that's not fair!"
     
  2. Chary
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    Chary Never sleeps.

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    He dug his own grave. He made the mistake to not believe in his IP. Without CD Projekt’s games, his books wouldn’t be half as popular. This is literally biting the hand that feeds you.
     
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  3. Wolfy

    Wolfy Person That Never Was

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    Wow, so as a result on how well they did he back-pedaled thinking he now has the right to the money after originally refusing the idea?

    Geez...could've just taken the money and said welp, guess I screwed up. No, apparently not.
     
    Last edited by Wolfy, Oct 2, 2018
  4. radicalwookie

    radicalwookie GBAtemp Fan

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    One time payments seem very reasonable for stuff like this, UNTIL shit get big. Then you are like this dude who regrets it :)
     
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  5. xtrem3x

    xtrem3x GBAtemp Regular

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    So he was offered a percentage and said no
    Now he's taking them to court to try and get the percentage.

    It's his own stupid fault
     
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  6. nando

    nando GBAtemp Addict

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    when will artist and authors learn to never sell their shit for flat rates, always license with tiers
     
  7. Subtle Demise

    Subtle Demise h

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    How? Why? I'm sure they had a lawyer draw up the contract in the first place. Good luck with that one.
     
  8. Tony_93

    Tony_93 GBAtemp Addict

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    In the USA he would be SoL, but this is another country and if the law there states that people can still get more money after deemed underpaid he might have something to bite. I hope he doesn't get a penny, this is GREED at it's finest form.
     
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  9. Axido

    Axido GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    He could very well be legally entitled to get what he demands. Maybe not a total of 16 million, but that's for a judge to decide on, right?
    For us mere observers there's not enough information to give any estimate, however.

    Did the one-time payment rule out the possibility of applying that specific law?
    Was there a contract stating that his compensation is final? And if so, does the law overrule such a statement?
    Does the law itself have to be understood in a way that the compensation, once paid, is a final amount never to be changed again? OR is it a vital part of said law that the payment is supposed to be changed if the compensation is not proportionate anymore?

    In the latter case his chances are pretty good. Law has to be taken literally, not the way something "feels right" or should be in a matter of moral. And even if the result feels irritating, that's not the fault of those who apply it, but of those who wrote it.


    I for one wouldn't mind such a law, since being a creator is a real gamble for most in the field. Why not at least ensure a proper financial compensation for those that get lucky? That being said the hate on someone who added a crucial aspect to a franchise that has become one of the most famous in the world is as unproportional as that guy's payment.
     
    Last edited by Axido, Oct 2, 2018
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  10. osaka35

    osaka35 Instructional Designer

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    womp womp. Feels like there are more details not being discussed.
     
    Last edited by osaka35, Oct 2, 2018
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  11. SG854

    SG854 GBAtemp Addict

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    You made an agreement dude for a one time payment. There is no Taksies Backsies.
     
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  12. Minox

    Minox Thanks for the fish

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    Som man bäddar får man ligga.

    Or in English - You made your bed, now sleep in it.
     
  13. hamohamo

    hamohamo GBAtemp Regular

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    He didn't believe in cdpk
     
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  14. DKB

    DKB ...!

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    What a foolish mistake he made.
     
  15. SG854

    SG854 GBAtemp Addict

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    He should've watched this

     
  16. J-Machine

    J-Machine Self proclaimed Pog champion

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    i side with the author. not because i support greed but because the success of the franchise should have been met with a compassion based check of gratitude or some other perk.
     
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  17. Shadowfied

    Shadowfied GBAtemp Addict

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    While I agree with you that he dug his own grave, it wasn't really about believing his IP or not, anyone can easily butcher an IP. CD Projekt had no portfolio either. Without getting to see a demo or anything, and depending on the authors situation in life, it might had been fair enough to go for the one time deal. Of course, it's a dick move to now think you're entitled to more after the fact.
     
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  18. Veho

    Veho The man who cried "Ni".

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    Kind of a dick move by the author. He has a legally valid claim to additional compensation but it's still a dick move.

    I expect them to settle for a much smaller sum than what he's asking for, that's how those things work.


    The contract becomes invalid if it breaches a current law that existed at the time of signing. If the contract doesn't cover for legal contingencies (as is the case here) then they must have a shitty lawyer.

    Not all authors are famous enough to dictate their own terms. Most take what they can get, and no publisher is willing to just hand out both a flat fee and a percentage.
     
  19. SG854

    SG854 GBAtemp Addict

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    True, it’s sort of a gamble. What’s the better choice? Many IP’s have failed and the one time payment was the better option. It’s a risks VS reward thing, higher risk yields higher reward. But it’s your choice and should own up to your choices.
     
    Shadowfied likes this.
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